Chrysler’s Mopar division has unveiled an interesting new feature that will be available with the 2013 Dodge Dart: wireless charging.
The system is fitted in the center console, just below the center stack. It features a built- in charging grid that can charge your iPhone, BlackBerry, Android or compatible MP3 player – no cords required.
Unfortunately there is a catch: Your device will need to be housed in a compatible case:
For easy access, a seamlessly integrated power bin, measuring 8.27 inches by 9.5 inches by 3.25 inches, is installed just below the center stack and in front of the center console. The bin has a built-in charging grid that is activated when customers place in their battery-powered device. The unit begins to charge when the vehicle is started. A phone case, specifically designed for a variety of smartphones, is required and included with the feature.
The whole case thing isn’t necessarily a deal breaker, but it will be a turnoff for some. People get attached to their cases and not everyone is going to warm to the idea of having their phone look like every other Chrysler driver’s. That’s the trouble that faces all proprietary wireless charging systems: A single company can’t satisfy everyone’s design requirements. One has to question whether Mopar, a company whose primary concern is motor vehicles, will be able to keep up with the constant changes to phone designs.
If you are interested, Mopar in-vehicle wireless charging will be available for $199.99 plus installation.